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*Always in Trouble* by Corinne Demas, illustrated by Noah Z. Jones
Also by Corinne Demas:

Halloween Surprise

Valentine Surprise

Also illustrated by Noah Z. Jones:

Dance with Me
Always in Trouble
by Corinne Demas, illustrated by Noah Z. Jones
Ages 3-7 40 pages Scholastic January 2009 Hardcover    

Whatever character Corinne Demas creates is surely one you will fall instantly in love with. That’s even easier than usual with Toby in Always in Trouble. He is a pound-type pup of the “generic” breed that is white and tan and just adorable. But can one still love Toby when he exhibits such wayward, undisciplined behavior? To put it simply, Toby is always in trouble, but he is also always loved.

Young readers easily learn the days of the week through repetition as they read about Toby’s mishaps each day. They will love the book and want it read to them, or read it themselves, over and over. The repetition of the days, along with the engaging illustrations by Noah Z. Jones, will have everyone enchanted by this disobedient dog.

Each day of the week, Toby is into a different kind of naughtiness. One day he’s eating the homemade bread, and soon after it’s the buttons on a coat. Toby gets into the garbage as much as he gets into trouble until finally Emma, his owner, decides it’s time for Toby to go to dog obedience school to learn right from wrong and how to follow simple orders. His first attempt at an education results in an F on his doggie report card. He goes back for another stay in an obedience school, where he will stay while he learns right from wrong.

Will Emma pick up her pup with an “Outstanding” on his report card this time, or will he just be out standing and running around when she arrives? To Emma’s surprise, she finds a new and improved Toby. He returns home and not only helps with chores like folding laundry but also bakes the bread instead of eating it. Can it be? Has Toby changed that much? Is he the same pup who left home and has come back like a different doggie?

Readers will be charmed by the story’s surprise ending; its cleverly illustrations bring the words alive so well. Another success in the tradition of Valentine Surprise and Two Christmas Mice - Corinne Demas adds another delightful winner to her already impressive list.

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  Karen D. Haney/2009 for curled up with a good kid's book  

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